Though a blinding mist sought to be a dampner and an obstacle to
India celebrating its 61st Republic Day on Tuesday, the nation and
its citizens observed the event with patriotic fervor, gaiety and
ceremony commenced with the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh,
leading the nation in paying homage to martyrs by laying a wreath at
the Amar Jawan Jyoti at India Gate at 9.25 a.m. on Tuesday morning.A
tri-services contingent sounded theLast Post on the occasion.
eternal flame burns at the Amar Jawan Jyoti to commemorate the
indomitable courage of our Armed Forces personnel who have made the
supreme sacrifice in the service of the motherland. The Amar Jawan,
the immortal soldier, is symbolised by a reversed rifle topped by a
per tradition, the tricolour was unfurled and the national anthem
was played soon after the arrival of the dignitaries.
Thereafter, President Pratibha Devisingh Patil conferred the Ashok
Chakra on Major D. Sreeram Kumar of 39 Assam Rifles, Major Mohit
Sharma (posthumous) of 1st Battalion, The Parachute Regiment
(Special Forces) and Havildar Rajesh Kumar (posthumous) of 11th
Battalion, The Rajputana Rifles.
parade commenced with the President taking the salute. South Korean
President Lee Myung-bak was the chief guest at this year’s parade.
General Kanwaljeet Singh Oberoi, the General Officer Commanding,
Delhi Area, commanded the parade. Brigadier Kuldip Singh was the
Param Vir Chakra winners Subedar Major (Honorary captain) Bana Singh
(retired), Havildar Sanjay Kumar, 13 JAK RIF and Havildar Yogendra
Singh Yadav, 18 Grenadiers and Ashok Chakra Winners Lt Col Jas Ram
Singh (retired), Brigadier CA Pithawalla, Cdr, HQ 3 Sect Rashtriya
Rifles and Hony Naib subedar Chhering Mutup (retired) followed in
marching contingents of Army included the horse-mounted columns of
the 61st Cavalry, the Brigade of the Guards, Madras Regiment, Jat
Regiment, Sikh Regiment, Dogra Regiment, Bihar Regiment, Gorkha
Regiment and the Territorial Army. The naval contingents, comprising
144 men,m was led by Lt. Commander Ajay Verma, while the Air Force
contingent, comprising 148 men, was led by Squadron Leader. R.
marching contingents of paramilitary and other auxiliary civil
forces included contingents from the Border Security Force, Assam
Rifles, Coast Guard, Central Reserve Police Force, Indo-Tibetan
Border Police, Central Industrial Security Force, Sashastra Seema
Bal, Railway Protection Force, Delhi Police, National Cadet Corps
and National Service Scheme. The Camel-mounted band of the Border
Security Force was another attraction.
Tableaux from 21 states and Central Ministries and Departments
presented the varied historical, architectural and cultural heritage
of the country. They also showcased the country’s progress in
Nineteen of the 21 children selected for the National Bravery Award
- 2009 participated in the parade. Two children have got the award
the children’s pageant section, 750 boys and girls drawn from
various schools presented dances and other programs.
Jaanbaz, the motorcycle display by the Border Security Force saw 178
riders on 34 motorcycles performing the Border Man Salute, Back
Riding, Ladder Balancing, Guldasta, Operation Tawar, Seema Chowki
Buland, Seema Prahari and Flag March under the leadership of
Inspector Gurpreet Singh.
performed breathtaking stunts in a synchronized and synergetic
display of mind, body and machine coordination.
grand finale was provided in the form of a spectacular fly-past by
the IAF, with the AWACS participating in the Parade for the first
time. One IL-78, flanked by two AN-32 and two Dornier, flying in Big
Boy formation, will lead the fly-past.
Among the major attractions of today’s parade was the Main Battle
Tank Arjun, the Smerch Multiple Launch Rocket System, the Armoured
Engineer Recce Vehicle, the Sarvatra Bridge, the Electronic Warfare
System, Samyukta, ICV BMP-II Sarath, Ambulance Tracked and ALH Dhruv.
on view was the indigenous systems being developed by the DRDO,
including the Light Combat Aircraft Tejas, Agni-III Intermediate
Range Ballistic Missile, Shourya Surface-to-Surface Strategic
Missile and the Rohini Radar.
Since New Delhi is hosting the Commonwealth Games in October this
year, the Games mascot “Shera” was the cynosure of all eyes along
the eight-kilometer-long parade route.
bevy of sportspersons, including boxer Vijender Singh, wrestler
Sushil Kumar, weightlifter K Malleshwari, athlete P T Usha, former
hockey players Ajitpal Singh and Zafar Iqbal, shooter Samresh Jung,
badminton player Gopichand Pullela, swimmer Khajan Singh and veteran
Olympian Milkha Singh were the star attractions of the parade.
AWACS, flanked by two Su-30 MKI, flying in Sentry formation. Five
Jaguars followed by five MiG-29 will fly in Arrowhead formation.
breathtaking Trishul formation comprising three Su-30 MKI would fly
over the Rajpath and once in front of the saluting dais the Su-30MKI
aircraft at the centre would carry out a Vertical Charlie manoeuvre.
ceremony culminated with the National Anthem and release of orange,
white and green balloons. (ANI)